Kidney disease affects over 660,000 people in the United States, making it one of the most common illnesses among Americans. The symptoms of kidney disease itself are often not the worst of it, though. It is the link between other common metabolic disorders such as diabetes and heart disease that make it even more dangerous.
If you have kidney disease, you may feel at a loss for what to do. You may even feel that there is nothing you can do to help a chronic disease, but you can do something. You can make your life easier and more comfortable and make a difference in your health. These are the tools you will need:
Information is perhaps the strongest tool you have in helping yourself treat chronic kidney disease. The more you know about your condition, the better able you will be to make the best decisions and know what actions to take. Helping your chronic kidney disease starts with gaining all the information you can.
Information means nothing if you do not understand it. Whenever you have questions or concerns, write them down and discuss them with your healthcare providers at your next appointment (or make one if you need to). You need to understand how your body and your condition work so that you can better understand why your treatment plan is right for you. For example, if you truly understand the way that diet affects kidney disease, you are more likely to stick with whatever diet and treatment plan is prescribed to you because you will then truly understand the importance of diet with chronic kidney disease.
Now that you have gathered the information you need, and gained an understanding of what chronic kidney disease means for you, then your next step is taking action. This means actively doing things to help yourself, such as following up with all of your doctors’ appointments, seeking guidance from a nutritionist, making meal plans, and following through with every step.
Your physician will likely explain to you the importance of diet changes to treat chronic kidney disease. Because everything you eat is ultimately processed through your kidneys, eating a kidney safe diet can mean the difference between worsening your condition and bettering it. In fact, a strict diet has the potential to actually slow the progression of chronic kidney disease. So a healthy, kidney safe diet that is approved by your doctor should be at the top of your action list.
You can make a difference and help your chronic kidney disease. Use these tools and information to truly make a difference in your own health and wellbeing. Start a conversation with your doctors, really listen, and ask questions. Then take action in the form of following your doctor’s recommendations and making healthy changes to your diet and lifestyle.